CPU buying advice

Jurjen Bokma

November 2007

Table of Contents

The problem at hand

Desktop computers are roughly divided into low end, mid range and high end. The boundaries between these sections of a single range remain a bit blurry. Available processors differ in cost, computations performed per second, compatibility with other hardware, power consumption (and consequentially, cooling needs), features, communication speed, and a host of other parameters. Still, most PC vendors offer some choice in the exact type of processor that goes into a PC. Our first question is: What criteria define the range of processors from which we wish to pick, and what values should demarcate its edges? And secondly, we want to know how to specify these half a year or more in advance?